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Effects of switching to aripiprazole from current atypical antipsychotics on subsyndromal symptoms and tolerability in patients with bipolar disorder

Woo, Young Sup; Bahk, Won-Myong; Park, Young-Min; Chung, Sangkeun; Yoon, Bo-Hyun; Won, Seunghee; Lee, Jeong Goo; Lee, Hwang-Bin; Kim, Won; Jeong, Jong-Hyun; Lee, Kwanghun; Kim, Moon-Doo

International Clinical Psychopharmacology: September 2016 - Volume 31 - Issue 5 - p 275–286
doi: 10.1097/YIC.0000000000000136

We evaluated the effectiveness of aripiprazole among bipolar patients who had switched to this medication as a result of difficulty maintaining on their prestudy atypical antipsychotics (AAPs) because of subsyndromal mood symptoms or intolerance. This study included 77 bipolar patients who were in syndromal remission with an AAP as monotherapy or with an AAP combined with a mood stabilizer(s) who needed to switch from their present AAP because of subsyndromal symptoms or intolerance. At 24 weeks after switching to aripiprazole, the remission rates on the Montgomery–Åsberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) and on both the MADRS and the Young Mania Rating Scale were increased significantly in the full sample and in the inefficacy subgroup. In the inefficacy subgroup, the MADRS score change was significant during the 24 weeks of study. Total cholesterol and prolactin decreased significantly after switching to aripiprazole. The proportion of patients who had abnormal values for central obesity and hypercholesterolemia decreased significantly from baseline to week 24. These findings suggest that a change from the current AAP to aripiprazole was associated with improvement in subsyndromal mood symptoms and several lipid/metabolic or safety profile parameters in patients with bipolar disorder with tolerability concerns or subsyndromal mood symptoms.

aDepartment of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea

bDepartment of Psychiatry, Seoul National Hospital

cDepartment of Psychiatry, Seoul Paik Hospital, College of Medicine

dStress Research Institute, Inje University, Seoul

eDepartment of Psychiatry, Ilsan Paik Hospital, College of Medicine, Inje University, Goyang

fDepartment of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Medical School, Jeonju

gDepartment of Psychiatry, Naju National Hospital, Naju

hDepartment of Psychiatry, Kyungpook National University School of Medicine, Daegu

iDepartment of Psychiatry, Haeundae Paik Hospital, Paik Institute for Clinical Research, College of Medicine, Inje University

jDepartment of Health Science and Technology, Graduate School of Inje University, Busan

kDepartment of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, Dongguk University, Gyeongju

lDepartment of Psychiatry, Jeju National University Hospital, Jeju, Korea

Correspondence to Won-Myong Bahk, MD, PhD, 10, 63-ro, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul 07345, Korea Tel: +82 237 791 250; fax: +82 278 06577; e-mail:

Received April 19, 2016

Accepted May 23, 2016

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